Muggins and I just came back from seeing the Ajkun Ballet, an international ballet company, www.ajkunbt.org. Courtesy of our friend Enid, we were attending the $4 Face-to-Face series, which was almost like attending a rehearsal in one of City Center’s practice rooms. As we filed in and saw that there were only three rows of seats, I said to Muggins, “Looks like we may be participating. Hope you’re feeling limber!” There was no reply.
Now, I have been to the ballet quite a bit, having seen both the NYC Ballet and the American Ballet Theater. But this was a performance of a different stripe, and not because we weren’t seeing a major company. I think, more than anything else, it was the proximity of the dancers. I had no idea before today how LOUD ballet dancers are. They leapt and landed with mighty thumps on those crazy toe shoes, effectively removing any sense of grace or etherealness. i think this opinion may have been influenced by the fact that we were seeing several excerpts from “Swan Lake,” and as soon as I heard the glorious music of Tchaikovsky, all I could think of was Wiggles’ childhood leader, Barbra Streisand, in “Funny Girl,” when she does a spoof of “Swan Lake” as Fanny Brice. With a heavy yiddish accent she says to the hunters, “Vat are you gonna do? Shoot the svans? These lovelies?” I stifled my laughter and looked over at Muggins, hoping he could restore my sense of decorum. I don’t think it would be a reach to say he had a stunned look on his face, as if he were witnessing either an inauguration or an execution, which sent me into another fit of giggles. But for $4 a seat, it was worth it.